A new report to determine what we need to do to achieve an effective, future-facing infrastructure system for South West England by 2050.
The South West Vision 2050 from the South West Infrastructure Partnership (SWIP), supported by Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) South West, sets out key challenges, drivers for change and potential enablers within the region, as we adapt and reduce carbon emissions in the period between now and 2050.
The report, produced by WSP, identifies four areas for action, three key asks of political leaders and five big questions for defining future needs. The document evidences the experiences of infrastructure and industry expert across the South West, recorded as part of the accompanying Beyond Brunel podcast series. New episodes of the podcast will be available each month along with a set of case studies showing examples of infrastructure projects in the region.
Peter Kydd, outgoing Chair of SWIP, said:
“When we first considered how to articulate an infrastructure vision for the South West, our objective was to shine a light on how we get to the future rather than be prescriptive about a preferred portfolio of specific construction projects. What better way to explore this than to put together our regional infrastructure leaders and experts in a room with a microphone and hear what they have to say. The South West Vision 2050 brings together this testimony with other evidence and case studies to provide insights for achieving our future infrastructure goals with ambition, urgency, efficiency, and coordination.”
The South West Vision 2050 reveals that much of the thinking needed to identify how to improve the lives of those within the region has already been done, but much more progress is required on committing investment to infrastructure projects that take a long-term view of people, place and the environment.
The report warns that political cycles, siloed working and past practices have guided the approach to infrastructure in the region, however, infrastructure leaders and professionals now have an opportunity to put the response to climate change and the needs of nature and society at the heart of decision making. The Vision says those living and working in the South West must act on personal and professional pledges, while organisations need to support the development of skills fit for the future. The report calls on the industry to better leverage the power of partnerships to create an informed and cohesive regional voice on infrastructure.
Miranda Housden, Director, ICE South West, said:
“What stands out, both in the podcast episodes and throughout the new report, is the focus on the end user. How do we better identify and meet the needs of people in the South West with infrastructure planning and decision making? The podcast is a starting point, and we hope to continue the conversation with local communities and infrastructure leaders to ensure the region is not left behind in the net zero transition.”
The South West Vision 2050 is a living document, which will be updated and expanded over time. Why not join the South West Infrastructure Partnership to contribute to the project. It’s free to register as a SWIP Contributor.